The 100-acre Manor of Paris Garden dates to 1113. Originally owned by the Knights Templar, it later passed to the Knights Hospitallers. The manor house, once owned by Jane Seymour, was acquired by the Bailiff of Southwark, who opened it to the public for bowling and gambling. Customers for the theatres and bear gardens landed at nearby Paris Garden Stairs and often stopped for refreshments. Its unlit wooded gardens made it a popular (and dangerous) meeting place! In the Commonwealth period the area was used for bleaching cloth and in the reign of Charles II was developed with housing and a church (see below).